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Accidental Poisoning

Protect your family against accidental poisoning

There are over a million cases of poisoning reported each year, most of them affecting children. To help reduce the risk of accidental poisoning in your home, take these simple precautions:

  • Never refer to medicine as candy; it can confuse young children.
  • Don't take your medicine in front of young children who may not understand its use.
  • Never give or take medicine in the dark.
  • Don't leave children alone with medicine. If you are interrupted while giving the medicine, take it with you.
  • Use products with child-safety caps.
  • Pour old medicines down the drain or toilet and rinse liquid medicine containers before disposing..
  • Keep syrup of ipecac on hand to use to induce vomiting in case of accidental ingestion.
  • Keep the number of the poison control center near the phone.
  • Keep all drugs, chemicals and personal care products in their original containers, not in bottles or bowls that children associate with food.
  • Don't store food and household products together.

Be especially cautious during a change in your family's routine, such as vacation, moving, arrival or a new baby or house guests as these are times when accidental poisonings are likely to occur.

If you suspect poisoning, check for these signs:

  • dizziness, drowsiness
  • odor on breath
  • open bottles or spilled container
  • vomiting, nausea or abdominal pain
  • difficult or shallow breathing
  • hyperactivity, irritability

Check to see if the victim is breathing:

if not, call an ambulance or police immediately
  • loosen clothing around the neck
  • perform mouth-to-mouth resuscitation
  • Take these first aid actions immediately:
  • call poison center, emergency room and/or doctor
  • cover victim with blanket and loosen tight clothing
  • do not give food, drink, alcohol or drugs
  • save and give doctor poisonous substance, container and label

Information provided by:
SecurityLink by Ameritec

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